There's been some rather weird news this week courtesy of Def Leppard and their record company. The band, whose first album came out in 1980, have announced that they are re-recording all of their old material. Turns out that this is to avoid their record company stiffing them on royalties for digital downloads. Whatever, it's a bit odd. Am I really going to pay for "forgeries" of the old records (Def Leppard call them that)? Well maybe. If this version of "Rock of Ages" is anything to go by having a mix with a big dynamic range and current day production values might just be worth it. But the old recordings will still be the best. For a start they have a different lineup now.
Def Leppard – Rock of Ages (2012 version) - http://youtu.be/-Sk5aeUoOjw
Now, re-recording your old material to avoid paying royalties or something similar is nothing new. Ozzy Osbourne had replacement bass and drum tracks added to some of his early solo albums. I'm glad I've got the originals.
Def Leppard covering other bands is also nothing new. And quite often they do it very, very well. If you're a Queen fan then you've probably already seen this but I reckon it's a real cracker...
Def Leppard with Brian May and Roger Taylor – Now I'm Here - http://youtu.be/Cz1p_u3s4W4
Remember back at Xmas time when I read Billy Connolly's book about his Route 66 motorcycle trip? Well the TV show has finally made it to Australia. And thanks to the magic of the hard drive recorder I've been watching it sans advertisements! What I really like about the show (and the book) is the fact that Billy is obviously having a pretty bloody good time. I'm getting more and more keen to do this trip sometime myself. I rode my motorcycle interstate for the first time today (which isn't all that far) but it was sunny and the coffee shop destination was very inviting. Now I know that Gundaroo doesn't sound nearly as exciting as St Louis, Chicago or Route 66 but it's a start! The Cork Street Cafe is highly recommended – I also remember them looking after DJ AB and I once during an Ironman training ride.
Jimi Hendrix – Ezy Rider - http://youtu.be/Abmb7wXM6Jw
ALERT! Serious guitar geekiness coming up. This next video comes to you via my guitar newsfeed. I think it speaks for itself. Probably something worth learning for my next visit to the guitar shop!
100 Riffs – A brief history of rock 'n' roll - http://youtu.be/xiC__IjCa2s
Make sure you watch at around riff 60 where he just changes instantly to a Drop D tuning! And then picks up a slide for 67! #88 is one that Angus plays all the time.
Right at the end of that collection is a riff that reminds me of this most excellent tune. Somewhere I've got this song on a dodgy cassette – I probably should seek out a decent version on CD or vinyl.
Joe Jackson – Is She Really Going Out With Him? - http://youtu.be/6SPogGqCgeM
King Cannons have finally released their debut album. I got hold of it last week and it's been on very heavy rotation. Wow, just wow! Run, don't walk to your pusher man and get a copy. I read recently that King Cannons were a cross between the Clash and Bruce Springsteen – that's a big call but not too inaccurate. This is my favourite song of the 13 on the album and it is a clear choice. I know that you can listen to the entire album legally on Spotify or Sound so do that and then pay $15 and get a hard copy. Money well spent supporting music from Down Under (they are Kiwis but live in Melbourne).
King Cannons – Call For Help - http://soundcloud.com/theinsound/call-for-help
School reports came home yesterday for our kids and we're pretty chuffed with both of them. Great kids. And now they are on holiday! Angus is off to ski camp next week so I guess I better devise ways to get Zoe out of her room!
The Beach Boys – In My Room - http://youtu.be/l71pbhqnvNM
I remember my parents buying a new hi-fi system and me getting the old one in my room. Having my own turntable and cassette deck was just awesome. My kids have access to a massive iTunes library as well as all the CDs – but it's not the same.
A quick shout out to DJ HB who is riding in the Canberra Tour this weekend – ride like the wind!
It would be remiss of me, as a big Lance Armstrong fan, not to make some kind of comment about the latest attempt to discredit him. There are so many rumours, whispers and inconclusive statements being trotted out in the media that it has become impossible to make head nor tails of the whole thing. There's so much that just doesn't add up. I was going to play an awesome Choirboys tune from their first album as a tribute to the media outlets but there isn't a decent copy online of "Bullsh*t" that I can find. This next song reflects how I feel at the moment...
Roxette – Lies - http://youtu.be/_BJOsshFL_I
I was talking this week about a band called Flogging Molly – I got into them via Dropkick Murphys and DJ Will. If you like your rock 'n' roll with an Irish twist give them a quick listen...
Flogging Molly – Swagger - http://youtu.be/tGPd8fUI9J8
Being on holidays I've got a couple of favourite movies to watch. I think my family has probably seen them one too many times so I'll try and time it for when they are out! Star Wars, Highlander and Austin Powers will all get an airing. As will my favourite movie of all time...can you guess...here's a hint (DJ Fatboy and Ducky should keep quiet!)...
Rod Stewart – You're In My Heart - http://youtu.be/8gL5QS2JpSk
When I taught at my last school there was a boy in one of my classes who was one of the best musicians I've ever met. He loved the bass and was a serious, serious musician. I played a couple of short shows with him on bass and DJ Doc on vocals. He was obsessed with this next tune and convinced that we should do it...you can maybe see why we didn't – a virtuoso I am not! (if you get bored of the intro then fast forward to the song itself at about 2:30)
Eric Johnson – Cliffs of Dover - http://youtu.be/15eu7ar5EKM
I read this week that Emmylou Harris is coming to town, that's right; to Canberra! Amazing. I'm sure it'll cost a gazillion dollars for a ticket but it might just be worth it. One of my favourite Emmylou moments is her being a backup singer (!) for Neil Young in his concert movie "Heart of Gold" from 2006. Track it down on DVD if you haven't seen it – better than sublime. Here's Emmylou with Willie Nelson. Man that is a great sounding, beat up old guitar!
Willie Nelson & Emmylou Harris – 'Til I Can Gain Control Again - http://youtu.be/vTijRT8ifZo
Angus is watching Rugby League so I'm off to read a book. Have a great weekend.